Brock Osweiler must prove that he is bigger than “The Moment”

By: Michael Eccleston

The Houston Texans (2-0) signed young quarterback Brock Osweiler to a massive four year, 72 million dollar deal this past offseason for big Primetime games like tonight. Houston has had a running game with stars such as Arian Foster and now Lamar Miller, along with one of the better defenses in the NFL for years now led by one of the greatest defensive players ever in J.J. Watt. They’ve had solid receiving cores led by top receivers such as Andre Johnson and now DeAndre Hopkins. The Texans have had some of the best all-around teams in the league, yet they just haven’t seemed to be able to get over the hump when it’s mattered the most.

What have they been missing? Houston has always been considered to be a quarterback away from contending for a Super Bowl.

Well, now they have one. 72 million dollars is a lot of faith in a quarterback who had only started seven games and had thrown 10 touchdown passes. If Osweiler left the Broncos because he didn’t want to deal with the pressure of succeeding Hall of Fame quarterbacks such as John Elway and Peyton Manning, or the pressure of becoming the next quarterback for a team that just won the Super Bowl, well, believe it or not, he’s come to the wrong place. Whether it’s fair or not, the 25 year old is going to be under fire immediately because he’s behind center for what has been considered to be a very good football team.

This isn’t a newly up and coming team, this is a team that many have lost faith in over the last few years because they just seem like the kind of team that isn’t big enough for “the moment”. They’ve been the biggest tease in the NFL. Well, people are starting to believe that the Texans will take the next step this season because of Brock Osweiler, and if they are going to do so, they NEED Osweiler to prove that he is the guy who can take them there. Hopkins said earlier in the week that tonight’s Patriots game is just another football game. IT IS NOT. This game in New England against a banged up 2-0 Patriots team is the kind of game Houston has to win in order to be taken seriously as contenders coming out of the AFC South. It’s a statement game that “this isn’t that same first round exit team we’ve been in years past”.

This is considered a must win game for the Texans because of the fact that the Patriots are throwing third string quarterback Jacoby Brissett out there, and even if tight end Rob Gronkowski (hamstring) plays tonight, he most likely won’t be out there for every snap. And if Houston wants to represent the AFC in the Super Bowl, they will need to go through New England in order to to get there, and if they can’t beat them tonight, I can only imagine what’s going to happen if they have to play a playoff game at Gillette Stadium against Tom Brady and a fully healthy Rob Gronkowski led Patriots team. I don’t care if it’s Week 3 or Week 16, this one is huge and Houston needs to capture the moment.

But, if they lose and Brock Osweiler doesn’t play well, what does that say about them? What does it say about him? Same old Texans. Overpaid Osweiler. Just not big enough for that moment.

The pressure is on.

Week 1 NFL Fantasy Rankings

by LaDonna Williams

QB’s

  1. Ben Roethlisberger            at Was
  2. Andrew Luck                        vs Det
  3. Aaron Rodgers                     at Jac
  4. Russell Wilson                      vs Mia
  5. Cam Newton                         at Den
  6. Eli Manning                           at Dal
  7. Carson Palmer                     vs NE
  8. Drew Brees                            vs Oak
  9. Brock Osweiler                     vs Chi
  10. Derek Carr                             at NO

QBs to stay away from

Whoever starts for the 49ers. Blaine Gabbert or Colin Kaepernick have not proven they are going to have an outstanding season this year. You might not want them on your team at all.

Tannehill playing against Seattle. The blitzing defense and Sherman is regarded as one of the best shutdown cornerbacks. Thomas the best safety for tackling, coverage and helps defensive backs line up in correct places.

RB’s

  1. Todd Gurley                       at SF
  2. Lamar Miller                      vs Chi
  3. Adrian Peterson               at Ten
  4. David Johnson                   vs NE
  5. Ezekiel Elliott                     vs NYG
  6. Eddie Lacy                           at Jac
  7. Deangelo Williams           at Was
  8. Devonta Freeman             vs TB
  9. LeSean McCoy                    at Bal
  10. Doug Martin                        at Atl

Reason Jamaal Charles isn’t on the list due to his unknown status for the game. Spencer Ware will get the ball, if Charles is out.

RB’s to stay away from

SF Carlos Hyde that line has major issues.

CJ Anderson, who had a mediocre season last year, will not have awesome game against Carolina. Although, Carolina defense wasn’t the best against the run last season. They will get the job done on Thursday.

Jeremy Langford wouldn’t be a good start either. They are playing the Texans and they have one of the best run defenses in the league.

 

WR’s

  1. Julio Jones                        vs TB
  2. Antonio Brown               at Was
  3. DeAndre Hopkins          vs Chi
  4. Dez Bryant                        vs NYG
  5. Odell Beckham                 at Dal
  6. Amari Cooper                   at NO
  7. Jordy Nelson                     at Jac
  8. AJ Green                              at NYJ
  9. Allen Robinson                 vs GB
  10. Brandon Marshall            vs Cin

WR’s to stay away from

Victor Cruz, he is just coming back from injury. He will be a little rusty.

Demaryius Thomas the biggest reason his QB. Trevor Siemian isn’t Peyton nor has he had a snap in the NFL.

Josh Gordon, who hasn’t played since 2014, will be suspended for the first game.

TE’s

  1. Rob Gronkowski       at Ari
  2. Jordan Reed                vs Pit
  3. Greg Olsen                  at Den
  4. Travis Kelce                 vs SD
  5. Gary Barnidge            at Phi
  6. Julius Thomas             vs GB
  7. Delanie Walker          vs Min
  8. Coby Fleener               vs Oak
  9. Zach Ertz                      vs Cle
  10. Jason Witten               vs NYG

TE’s to stay away from

Zach Miller, I see Orton doing horrible against Texans defense. Miller may get the ball just because a double team against Jeffery but not a significant amount.

Any tight end from the Jets… plain and simple they are all horrible.

 

Defense

  1. Panthers           at Den
  2. Seattle               vs Mia
  3. Vikings              at Ten
  4. Rams                   at SF
  5. Green Bay          at Jac
  6. Denver                vs Car
  7. Arizona               vs NE
  8. Houston              vs Chi
  9. Bengals                at NYJ
  10. Patriots                at Ari

Kickers

  1. Stephen Gostkowski             at Ari
  2. Chandler Catanzaro             vs NE
  3. Steven Hauschka                  vs Mia
  4. Mason Crosby                        at Jac
  5. Graham Gano                         at Den
  6. Dan Bailey                               vs NYG
  7. Justin Tucker                           vs Buf
  8. Blair Walsh                              vs Ten
  9. Chris Boswell                           at Was
  10. Adam Vinatieri                       vs Det

Do all championships matter?

January 15th, 1967
Bart Starr and Vince Lombardi enjoy a cigar together. They have just won their 4th championship together, it’s a back to back championship  (they would 3-peat a year later) they had just won a game they had considered a formality. To us now it was a way more important game. It was Superbowl I. This date divides NFL fans like no other. Imagine what Vince and Bart would have thought if this game, that meant so little to them at the time, would matter more then the 3 championships they had already won. That this one was more real then then the one they had won just the year before.

…do all championships deserve to be counted in any sport?

In 2020, just 4 years from now, the NFL will celebrate it’s 100th anniversary. That NFL season will crown a champion at Superbowl LVI  (56). That leaves 44 championships that happened before the Superbowl. Do those presuperbowl championships count? This question divides many NFL fans. If you enjoy a good argument go to a group with a Packer fan (the NFL leader with 13 if you count presuperbowl) and a Steelers fan (the NFL leader if you only count Superbowls with 6) and ask them if championships count before the Superbowl era. 

This begs the question; do all championships deserve to be counted in any sport? Should we count World Series titles from before the league was integrated? NBA championships from before the NBA and ABA merged? Stanley cups from the original 6 days? College football National Champs from before the playoff system (or before the BCS)? Any heavy weight boxing champion since Lenox Lewis? 

Here’s the argument for why they shouldn’t count in the various sports. 

Baseball

So we can talk about how pitchers pitched in 3 and 4 man rotations on 3 day rest. Or how there was no such thing as specialized relief pitchers, set-up men, or closers. Let’s focus on the integration of the league. 

Stars like Satchel Paige and Josh Gibson would have dominated in any league or era. Had they not been stuck in the negroe leagues, how many MLB records would these two hold? How much would the influx of these stars affect who won world series? How can you say you’re the World Champs if half the best players in the world play in a different league?

Basketball 

Which  NBA team drafted drafted Dr.J? The Milwaukee Bucks. Thing is he signed with a team from the ABA. As did so many of the stars of basketball. The two leagues champions both can legitimately claim to be the world champs. They didn’t play each other so who is the true champ?

Hockey 

Six teams. “6.” How can you call yourself the champion of anything in a 6 team league?

College Football

Here’s the one the argument is easiest. Before the BCS sportswriters just picked a champ. The top 4 teams rarely had played each other in the season. There were multiple champions in several seasons. There were years that a one lose team was champ over an undefeated team. 

Even the BCS era can be debated. Could the 2007 Florida Gators really have beaten the USC squad thats almost entire defense has made a nfl pro bowl? How can anyone justify having the championship game being two teams from the same division of the same conference? 

The NFL

Really there is no reason other then calling it the superbowl to start counting then. It started at the end of the second Packer dynasty, how can you say that the 66 or 67 Packers are intrinsically better then the 65 or 63 Packers? Many will tell you 1932 is the true start of modern football. You can make the argument that football wasn’t the game we know until 1981, when the west coast offense proved that a pass first offense can win, and transformed the league from a running back driven league to a quarterback driven league. You can even argue that nothing before 1993 and fee agency really can count. Deion Sanders, Charles Haley, and Reggie Whites free agent moves definitely changed who would win the championships for the next few seasons.

This all seems legit. The athletes back then weren’t as big or fast as today. The number of teams they had to play was so small how can they be considered champs? There were other leagues playing so how can one leagues team be the true champ?

So why should all championships count?

Simply put those other leagues weren’t as good. The NFL and AFL had agreed to merge in 1962. They had drafted as one entity from that point forward. The AFL (then the AFC) wasn’t able to actually compete with the NFL until 1969. That’s 8 years of building on equal terms before they compete with the NFL. When the NBA and ABA merged the ABA contracted 2/3rd of its teams. They entered the nba as essentially ABA all star teams. They didn’t dominate, these all star teams didn’t even win a championship in the NBA. 

It comes down to this you play the teams they put in front of you. You beat them and you are the champion.

Can players play in any era? I’m sure Dick Butkus  would still be a pro bowl middle linebacker today. Jim Brown would still be a star. Deacon Jones could lineup with JJ Watt.  Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Oscar Robinson or Bill Russell would still dominate.

With their style of play, Jerry West and Pistol Pete Maravich would probably be bigger stars today then in their era.  Lou Gehrig and Ted William’s bats would have been feared in any era. 

You can only play the teams they put in front of you. You beat them and you are the champion. Period. If you win a NFL championship in 1941 and you win a championship playing in the NFL in 2011 you’ve won the exact same thing. What would you say if in 2027 they decide that all championships before instant replay don’t count, since they cannot be accurate?

You can’t pick and choose. You can’t say that college football championships only count from the BCS on and then say that all World Series count. You can’t say that all NBA championships count but only Superbowls count for the NFL. 

Either all championships count in all sports, or you have to draw a line in every sport. How does that line change if those teams were the best in the world in their time? 
J.Russell Zinn 7/28/16

Drew Brees to the Houston Texans Just Makes Sense…

It’s the time of year when football fans start fantasizing about ways their team can make that one big move that will take their team to the top in the next season.

With their team coming back from a 1-4 record to start the year, to ultimately win their division and head to the playoffs, Texans fans have to be of the mind set that anything can happen.

In 2015 most of their success was due to the play of J.J. Watt and a devastating defense, as they only got mediocre production from their quarterback and running back spots. 

 

The only real star they currently have on their offense is DeAndre Hopkins, who proved by hauling in 111 catches, for 1,521 yards and 11 touchdowns, in his first season as a #1 receiver, that he can be one of, if not the best passcatcher in the game.

Imagine what D-Hops could do with a future hall of famer like Drew Brees throwing him the ball. 

 

The Saints already have a $12 million cap hit going into next season, and after restructuring Brees’ salary to squeeze out some extra room this year, he would count for $30 million against their cap in 2016.

That will be a ton of pressure for a team who has a bunch of holes to fill and could possibly even have a new head coach next year.

If the Saints do let Brees go, there should be a bunch of teams (Cleveland Browns, NY Jets, St Louis Rams) interested in acquiring his services, but none of them make as much sense as the Houston Texans.

 
 The Texans also have a couple of other passionate and experienced veteran receivers (Nate Washington and Cecil Shorts) who would make nice targets for Brees, and could help reestablish himself as an elite quarterback. 

 

If Arian Foster can recover from his Achilles surgery and stay healthy next season this could be one of the most dangerous offenses in the entire NFL. 

  
  

Also,  signing Brees through free agency, would allow Houston to focus their draft strategy on bringing in another top wide receiver, running back or tight end to add even more firepower to this squad.

A move like this would definitely have Texans fans dreaming about a Super Bowl victory. For now they can only cross their fingers and hope for the best.